D23 to celebrate Discovery Bay, Disneyland's never-built tribute to Jules Verne & H.G. Wells, at Attraction Rewind event

September 3, 2014 1:07 PM

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D23 to celebrate Discovery Bay, Disneyland's never-built tribute to Jules Verne & H.G. Wells, at Attraction Rewind event

35 years ago this week, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad first began rolling through Disneyland's Frontierland. And while millions of theme park fans have enjoyed "The Wildest Ride in the Wilderness" since then, few folks today realize that -- if Disney's Imagineers had had their way back in the 1970s -- this thrill ride wouldn't have just been a stand-alone attraction. No, Big Thunder was supposed to have served as the gateway to this entirely new "land" at "The Happiest Place on Earth."

What am I talking about? Well, imagine if the miners who dug all of those tunnels deep down into that mysterious mountain hadn't blown all of their hard-earned gold on wine, women and song? What if they had spent their fortunes instead building a "San Francisco of the 1850s - 1880s" right at the nor...

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